Serving on a Jury is a Civic Duty
Serving on a jury may be one of the most important and significant civic privileges that we have as a citizen of the United States. On behalf of the Chesterfield Circuit Court and the Clerk’s Office we thank you for your commitment and dedication to our American justice system.
About Jury Duty
If you are determined qualified to serve during the qualification questionnaire process, you may be randomly selected through an automated process to receive a Summons for Jury Service through the mail sometime in the following year.
Jurors in Chesterfield are on call for one day, and if selected to report, serve the length of one jury trial. Most jury trials last one or two days but can be longer depending on the case. If selected to report on your assigned date, you may or may not be selected by counsel to hear the case. If not selected to hear the case, you will be released, and your jury service is complete.
Jurors who are on call, but not selected to report on their assigned day, may be summoned again later in the same year if needed. This is dependent upon the number of qualified jurors and jury trials for the year.
Jurors who are selected to report for jury duty will receive reimbursement for expenses in the amount of $30 per day of required appearance. This amount is set by the Virginia legislatures. Jurors who appear when they are not selected to report, will not receive reimbursement. Please follow the instructions on your summons carefully.
Federal government employees should read the Office of Personnel Management’s Fact Sheet: Court Leave for more information.
Virginia law requires employers to excuse employees from regular workdays when summoned for jury duty. Employers should refer to Section 18.2-465.1 of the Code of Virginia for more information. If you have a conflict with your report date, you may defer your service to later in the year on the Chesterfield Juror website.
Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) Policy
Should you need reasonable accommodations to serve on a jury, such as an interpreter or mobility assistance, please make your request on the Chesterfield Juror website when confirming your summons. You may also email Jury Services with your request.
Juror Qualification Questionnaire
Annually, in August, the Chesterfield Circuit Court mails qualification questionnaires to randomly selected Chesterfield residents to determine service eligibility. The qualification questionnaire is not a summons to appear for jury duty.
Responses are reviewed by Jury Commissioners (appointed by the Chief Judge), who determine a person's eligibility to serve based on a set of instructions in accordance with Virginia laws.
Completing the Questionnaire
The Juror Qualification Questionnaire is an official court document. If you received one in the mail, you are required to answer all the questions truthfully, and return the questionnaire within 10 days of receipt. Failure to do so may result in you being summoned to the court to compete the form in person. Please read the questionnaire in its entirety and carefully follow the instructions provided.
Complete the questionnaire in one of the following ways:
- Online (preferred): Complete the online version of the Juror Qualification Questionnaire using a computer, tablet, laptop or mobile device (cell phone). You will need the Candidate/Juror ID indicated at the top of the mailed questionnaire form. Online is quick, easy and secure. Once submitted, there is nothing further you need to do.
- Mail-in Form: For those who do not have access to the internet, the mailed questionnaire can be completed and returned. Be sure to follow the "Important Instructions" at the top of the questionnaire, write your answers legibly, sign and date. To mail back the form:
- Follow the "Fold Here and Seal to Return" markings located on the questionnaire. Do not tape or staple the questionnaire.
- Verify the "Return Completed Form To" court address is facing outward.
- Apply postage and place in the mail.
- In Person: Completed mailed questionnaires may be filed in the Chesterfield Circuit Court Clerk's Office during regular business hours.
Disqualifications and Exemptions
For the qualification phase, only those disqualifications and exemptions listed on the Juror Qualification Questionnaire, and those allowed by Virginia law, will be considered by the Jury Commissioners. If you believe you qualify for an exemption not listed on the questionnaire, indicate your request in the space provided. Should you receive a summons in the mail next year, you will be able to address any hardships with the jury office at that time. Please, do not call the jury office seeking a disqualification at this time.
- No Longer a Resident of Chesterfield County: If you are no longer a resident of Chesterfield County, and receive a Juror Qualification Questionnaire, you still need to complete the questionnaire to be disqualified. Select that you are no longer a resident of Chesterfield County and provide your new address in the space provided. To avoid receiving future questionnaires from Chesterfield County Circuit Court, you must update your information with the Chesterfield County Registrar’s office.
Qualified for Jury Service - What's Next?
You may receive an Official Summons for Jury Service in the mail at any time during the following year. Summonses for jury service are mailed monthly, starting with January summonses being mailed around Dec. 1. You will receive plenty of advanced notice to plan accordingly. The summons will contain a report date along with specific instructions for you to complete.
Summons for Jury Service
Confirm Receipt of Summons
The Summons for Jury Service is an official order of the court. Read both sides carefully for important information and instruction. You must confirm your summons within 10 days of receipt:
- Locate your Candidate/Juror ID at the top of your summons.
- Login to the Chesterfield Juror website using your Candidate ID and date of birth.
- Once logged in, complete the summons questionnaire. Be sure to include your email address and phone number. The Court relies on up-to-date contact information to provide updates to jurors during their service.
- Not confirming receipt of your summons does not excuse you from jury service.
Check Reporting Status
After 5 p.m. the business day before the report date listed on your summons check your reporting status by calling the Juror Information Line and/or by visiting the Chesterfield Juror website:
- Juror Information Line: 804-409-8605 - follow the message prompts to check your status.
- Chesterfield Juror website: select the "Profile/Status" tab and refer to the “Reporting Date” (black) line.
- You must report if: the "Reporting Date" line indicates a reporting date and time. Bring your summons with you for check-in.
- You do not need to report if: the "Reporting Date" line indicates "check back-see summons” or “service complete." You may be summoned again later in the year.
- Changes to jury trials can occur late notice; therefore, it is important to not check your status until after 5 p.m.
If you confirmed receipt of your summons and provided your email and mobile phone number, you will receive important communication reminder regarding your jury service. However, the court is not responsible for internet and/or mobile service interruptions. It is your responsibility to follow the instructions provided in your summons to check the status of your jury service.
Internet and Social Media
The Sixth Amendment of our Constitution guarantees a trial by an impartial jury. Potential jurors should not conduct any type of independent or personal research or investigation regarding any matters related to court cases. It is imperative these instructions be followed carefully. Please read the Juror Responsibilities Regarding the Internet and Social Media (PDF).
If you misplaced your summons, visit the Chesterfield Juror website to reprint a new one.
- Click on “Print Letters” tab
- Click on “Reprint Juror Summons”
- Turn off pop-up blockers if the summons PDF does not generate
Check Reporting Status and Time After 5 p.m.
Courthouse Security and Prohibited Items
Please read the Court Safety and Security page for a list of prohibited items in the courthouse and what to expect upon arrival. All electronic devices including cell phones are prohibited. There are lockboxes at the entrance of the courthouse to store these items, if needed.
Please park in Lot 1, which is to the left of the courthouse off of Court Complex Road and Jury Drive. Handicap parking is available to the right of the courthouse, in Lots 2 and 3.
Dress Code and Etiquette
Appropriate attire is required. Please read the Courts Dress Code and Etiquette Policy page for further information. The temperature in the courtroom can fluctuate, so please plan accordingly.
Failure to Appear
A juror's absence could prevent the trial from going forward, inconveniencing not only the parties and witnesses involved but also fellow jurors. In the event you will be late or cannot appear due to a true emergency or illness, contact Jury Services as soon as possible at 804-751-4411 or by email.
Pursuant to Section 8.01-356 of the Code of Virginia, failing to appear for jury service may result in a criminal contempt of court charge and a fine not less than $50 nor more than $200.
The jury coordinator will take attendance and conduct a brief orientation session. It is important that you arrive on time. Bring your summons and a form of ID with you.
Below is a list of amenities that are provided to make your time here as pleasant as possible:
- Free coffee, tea and filtered water dispenser (hot and cold)
- Vending machine for drinks (available for cash or card)
You may bring a book, crossword puzzle or other quiet activity to do while waiting to be called to the courtroom.
For further information, please refer to the jury orientation video.
There is no statutory exemption for students.
If you received a Juror Qualification Questionnaire:
Students are still required to complete the Juror Qualification Questionnaire.
Students who have moved out of Chesterfield County and changed their legal residence (e.g.; DMV, voter registration) may request a non-resident disqualification on the Chesterfield Juror website. You will need the Candidate/Juror ID indicated at the top of the mailed questionnaire. See the Juror Qualification Questionnaire section for additional information.
If you received a Summons for Jury Service:
If your report date is problematic, you may defer your service to a date later in the year.
Students who are a legal resident of Chesterfield and will not return to Chesterfield County at any time during the year, must send a relevant statement to Jury Service by email.
Students who have moved out of Chesterfield County and changed their legal residence (e.g.; DMV, voter registration) may request a non-resident disqualification on the Chesterfield Juror website.
Deferral of Service
If your assigned report date presents a hardship, the court will grant a one-time deferral of service to another day in the year. This option is only available up to five days before your original report date. You may make this request through the "Defer Service" tab on the Chesterfield Juror website. Your request will be automatically granted and a new summons mailed to you prior to the new date.
Jury Service is an important civic and community duty for which you have a legal obligation. However, if you believe you qualify for an exemption of service under Virginia Code Section 8.01-341 or Section 8.01-341.1, make your request on the Chesterfield Juror website under the "Disqualify Service" tab. Please allow up to three business days for your request to be processed.
You will receive an automated message regarding the status of your request as long as you provided your mobile phone number and email address on the Chesterfield Juror website when confirming your summons. You may also check the status of your request on the Chesterfield Juror website under the "Profile/Status" tab or by calling the juror information line at 804-409-8605. Please note that exemptions will not be granted when deferral of your reporting date is an option.
Below is a list of exemptions/disqualifications available in the "Disqualify Service" tab on the Chesterfield Juror website:
- I am not a resident of Chesterfield County (must provide your new address).
- I am 70 years of age or older and do not wish to serve (this is a permanent exemption).
- I have legal custody and am responsible for children 16 years of age or younger during court hours.
- I am a mother breast-feeding a child.
- I am responsible for a person having a physical or mental impairment requiring continuous care during court hours.
- I am the only person performing services for a business and the business would close or cease to operate if I am required to report for jury service at any time during this year (submission of relevant statement required),
- I am a licensed and practicing attorney.
- I am a sworn sheriff, deputy sheriff, state police or police officer in a county, city or town (Federal service is not exempt).
- I am on active duty with the armed forces of the United States or Virginia and serving out of the area (a letter from your commanding officer is required).
- I have a temporary physical or mental disability. I am not able to sit for several hours without a break. I request to be excused from jury service for this year only.
- I have a permanent physical or mental disability. I am not able to sit for several hours without a break. I request to be excused from jury service permanently.
If you were summoned for jury service and failed to appear, you may be contacted by the court. If this happens, a judge may summon you to appear before the court for an explanation as to why you missed jury service.
Police and court officials will never ask for payment, a credit card, money card or social security number for failure to appear for jury duty over the phone or by email.
Report suspicious activity immediately to local law enforcement by calling the Chesterfield County Police investigations unit at 804-748-1268.
Be aware of jury duty scams - view the jury duty phone scam video.
If there is a change to your jury service due to severe weather conditions or other emergency, you will be notified by text and/or email so long as you provided your mobile phone number and email address on the Chesterfield Juror website when confirming your summons.
Check the Court Closing and Inclement Weather page for further information.
Note: Media announcements regarding closings and/or delayed openings for Chesterfield County government offices do not apply to the Chesterfield Courts or Clerk’s office.